Is Mexico Safe?

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Arte, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. Bato

    Bato Been here awhile

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    <iframe width="640" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/dPH1kBtG59g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
  2. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    <IFRAME height=281 src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/55148160" frameBorder=0 width=500 allowFullScreen mozallowfullscreen webkitAllowFullScreen></IFRAME>

    This is Mx 175 south of Oaxaca, on the way to Puerto Escondido, in February of this year. I found the missing clips.

    The GoPro (first version) was mounted on the windscreen of the GSA. I recommend a helmet mount, but that will mean additional editing.

    Mx 175 isn't in the greatest condition, but it is good in most stretches. I have video of the aftermath of Bob C's crash I'll put up later.

    The "fisheye" effect of the GoPro means that even tucked in tight, the final product makes it look like you're not as close to the rider ahead as you really are. For most of these shots, I was right on Bob C's tail - but it doesn't appear that close in any of the shots. Schizzman and Jimmex can attest I was riding way over my limits trying to keep up to Bob and each of them. Shots of those guys coming up.

    Note: I really like the CD the soundtrack came from. I picked it up in Peru last year.
  3. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    You can see Schizzman and Jimmex at about the one minute mark into the video. :freaky

    "Go Full Screen" :deal
  4. Bato

    Bato Been here awhile

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    Where is.....
    [​IMG]
  5. MikeMike

    MikeMike Long timer

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    Trice, interesting video. There is a lesson right around the 1:38 to about 1:45 mark that I think is worth noting for anyone who might have missed it. You had to back off because of the reddish/brown pickup truck, and within a short distance the truck then moves left to avoid a patch of earth on the roadway, and coming at you is another vehicle. If someone had been in a hurry to stick to the first rider for whatever reason and tried to get by the pickup, they would have likely been squeezed.
    Luckily, right at that stretch, the oncoming vehicle had some shoulder on their right and could have moved over, but a rider forcing the squeeze play would be leaving a dinner plate sized hickey on their bike seat.
    The reason I mention this is that, more often than not, in the sierra people drive at a their pace and they know the roads and have driven them for a long period of time in different vehicles. These are the locals in cars and trucks and buses. They will swerve to avoid you but likely will try to brake first which can complicate things as they might not reach the little runoff area on the shoulder they might have. This is where things get complicated real fast and they will take you out rather than doing any kind of a dangerous swerve that would put them over the edge. They know what will happen. They are protected for the most part but you are looking at a head on collision or getting clipped on the front or side of your bike and you will be on the losing end. I know this because I have gotten lucky before and don't want to roll the dice, again. I just thought I would share it because when I was watching the video, I was watching it as if I was riding that particular bike and trying to pick up what was happening on the sides and as far ahead as possible.
    Expect the unexpected at all times from locals, they will swerve for potholes etc... and do so at the worst time and right into your lane. If you are riding on your personal edge, and need to make a correction mid-corner, it is not always going to work out according to your Plan A it will only work out according to what the oncoming vehicle is doing. Mid-corner corrections on mountain roads with an irregular surface, or a little sand or gravel or donkey/goat/cow/sheep shit on them, are difficult at the best of times, it gets worse when you are over the "pace" and outside your limits.
    Trice's risk management applies here just like in any other situation.
    Thanks for the ride, Trice!
  6. Turkeycreek

    Turkeycreek Gringo Viejo

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    This is my calculation: About 98% of people driving are not paying attention to anything other than staying on the road - tunnel vision - and therefore can kill you. Another 1% isn't paying attention at all and can kill you. The last 1% is actively paying attention and is trying to kill you. Dispute the numbers if you like, adjust them for different locales but this is the math I use. The other calculation is the number of risk factors. Like traffic, road surface, speed, weather, fatigue, and the deep shadow versus bright sun in the road cuts, night riding, etc. Risks are not additive, they are multiplied. I can manage a few at a time but more than that , it is time to take a break. Bad roads; bad vehicles and bad drivers kill more people in Mexico every year than narco violence. Get there safe.

    Saludos!
  7. kobukan

    kobukan almost gnarly

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    Heck, Mexico is much safer than Maine then. Around here it's the other way around . . . only 1% of people driving are not paying attention to anything other than staying on the road . . . most are texting their friends.
  8. SkizzMan

    SkizzMan There, that's it

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    That sums it up about right, I think. When people shake their head at me for riding Mexico I tell them that the real dangers are traffic and road conditions. Unless you're in that certain business or are terminally stupid. For most CNN has already told them what to think of Mexico and who am I anyway?

    Road signs are a great way to pick up a little Spanish lingo. "Grava Suelta" means "loose gravel". :eek1
  9. Bato

    Bato Been here awhile

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    Love the video., and you guys for how you lean the bikes ., not that i can't do it better but because I cant see my self :rofl

    Schizz ., You should sue OXXO for stealing your avatar
  10. Turkeycreek

    Turkeycreek Gringo Viejo

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    Reminds me of Groucho - "who are you going to believe, me of your own 2 eyes?"

    My favorite sign is "Camino sin oso" - Road without a bear.:D
  11. PirateJohn

    PirateJohn Banned

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    Or even worse, there is the infamous camino sin bar - road without a bar. :cry
  12. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    <IFRAME height=281 src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/55173126" frameBorder=0 width=500 webkitAllowFullScreen mozallowfullscreen allowFullScreen></IFRAME>

    I had moved the GoPro to the back of the bike just before Bob's biff.

    What you don't see is his almost perfect flip.

    We discussed for quite a long time the physics of how his speed/tragectory/road surface etc. could have made that happen.
  13. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    Indeed, in the clip above, one of the four kids (the one on the far right) is holding one of the playground balls I take to Mexico and hand out at various times. :freaky

    That tradition will never end :deal
  14. MikeMike

    MikeMike Long timer

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    It was your moving the camera that caused that accident.
    You upset the natural order of the universe.
    Like Steve Wright once said, "I found a light switch in my apartment that didn't seem to do anything when I turned it on and off, a lady from Germany called and told me to stop doing that".
  15. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    [​IMG]

    Where Steven Wright gets his material :norton
  16. SkizzMan

    SkizzMan There, that's it

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    "What's another word for thesaurus?" - S. Wright :bubba
  17. SkizzMan

    SkizzMan There, that's it

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    We're all afraid to lean over as far as you do, Amigo. Even with MedJet Assist.
    They didn't steal it. They licensed it. Ever see me actually pay for anything at an Oxxo? :evil
  18. SkizzMan

    SkizzMan There, that's it

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    In all fairness to Bob C. we'd been running through wash-out in a number of turns without incident. That particular turn just had some nasty marbley gravel. Any one of us could have gone down in that. But few could have done it with the grace that Bob did. :lol3
  19. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    Here is a much better shot of what Bob's bike looked like in mid-air:

    <IFRAME height=360 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/joNHwnqVcq8?rel=0" frameBorder=0 width=640 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>


    I still don't know how he pulled it off and got back on like nothing happened.

    :freaky
  20. dcstrom

    dcstrom Long timer

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    I went down to Batapilas from Guachochi yesterday, back today... awesome ride. Stayed at Juanita's.

    [​IMG]

    I'd been in Guachochi a couple of days before going down there, and had got talking to a couple of guys from the electricity company that were staying in the hotel. They travel around towns and villages in the region, and spoke pretty good english. They told me there are some problems in the area, with narcos mainly but also drunks on the road... Their advice was, it's OK in town, just don't travel at night. Thanks, I wasn't planning on it!

    I don't know whether this is new for this area? But anyway, with this in mind, I took off on my little side trip to Batopilas. Nothing of note yesterday, but today I noticed 3 heavily armed police near the plaza in Batopilas. Seems like overkill for a sleepy village in the middle of nowhere?

    On the way back up I passed a government vehicle with a bullet hole through the windscreen, right where the driver would be sitting. The current occupant was alive and well, but I have to assume one of his predecessors "got it"...

    Just after that I spotted a car load of soldiers in one of the small communities, and tonight there were 3 armed soldiers that appeared to be standing guard outside the restaurant where I had dinner. I talked to them a bit and they had a laugh at my attempted spanish, I didn't get the sense that there was any immediate problem.

    I'm new to Mexico so have no idea if this kind of thing is "normal" or not, but thought I'd mention it here to see what you guys think?

    Trevor